These Wicked Dexterity Drills are just what the Doctor ordered…
First published on notreble, this dexterity regimen effectively addresses several common issues:
- coordination between the right and left hands
- independence of all fingers, but especially the third and pinky fingers
- more comfort with one-finger-per-fret
- string crossing
- speed training
Dexterity is all about coordination
It’s a great warm-up, a useful regular shedding drill and many of my students think it is just plain fun because it is such a wicked challenge. As always, the most important challenge is to see it as an opportunity to stay relaxed. If you start cramping up:
- drop the left hand (gently hand it over to gravity, don’t throw it)
- drop the right hand
- feel the weight of your shoulders
- relieve the thumb by allowing the right arm resting on the bass body to take a load off for the left.
Feel into your hands – where else could you let go? Be like Sherlock and look for muscles that might be working too hard and relax a bit more as you do these dexterity drills. Drills like these are the perfect opportunity to check on your technique – it is all about the fingers. Listen for clean tone and play them as if they were a beautiful piece of music.
This dexterity drill is a great addition to your practice routine – it is like one of those full-body toning workouts you do in the gym. Here is the PDF that goes with it.
For technique drills that take you from basic to advanced levels check out my course – Music Theory for the Bass Player. Why a music theory course for bass? Because if you learn music theory on the fretboard and apply it effectively (I show you how), you go way beyond just copying songs – you learn how to create your own grooves and fills. And why technique drills? Because theory is all about shapes and shapes are best done with great fingering. It’s a super well thought out, well-researched 20 unit course!